In a surprise move, the Islamabad Police apprehended Imaan Mazari, a prominent human rights lawyer, from her home early Sunday. Personnel from Tarnol Police Station reported that Mazari faced charges relating to interference in state affairs, participating in a sit-in, and showing resistance. Shireen Mazari, Imaan’s mother and an ex-PTI leader, recounted the incident, stating that plainclothes officers initially detained their security guard before forcibly entering their home. During this intrusion, she claimed around 20 individuals, including six female officers, searched the premises and confiscated various items, including their phones.
Mazari Family’s Outcry and Public Response
Shireen Mazari vehemently criticized the raid, referring to it as “state fascism” and questioning the absence of legal documentation authorizing the search or arrest. Describing the situation on X, the former microblogging platform, she expressed distress over the officers’ refusal to let her daughter change from her night attire before being taken away. She alleged the personnel’s behaviour was akin to an “abduction.” Before her arrest, Imaan reported on X about unidentified individuals damaging their security cameras and intruding onto their property. Concurrently, Ali Wazir, an ex-member of the national assembly, was taken into custody by Islamabad Police on similar charges of interfering in state operations.
Human Rights Concerns
The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) denounced the manner of Imaan’s arrest and called for her immediate release. In a statement on X, HRCP labelled the police’s actions as “unacceptable,” emphasizing a growing concern over potential state-backed aggression against individuals expressing their freedoms.